Proposed Submission Local Plan 2006-2028

Traffic Matters

5.35 A final Yeovil transport modelling study was produced by the consultants ‘Parsons Brinckerhoff’ and assessed 10 different options for the proposed Yeovil urban extension. In addition, a ‘Highways Infrastructure Requirements for Yeovil urban extensions’ report was produced that assesses the preliminary cost estimates of the various options for the proposed Yeovil urban extension.

5.36 On the basis of these reports, the potential impact on the highway network of the different options for Yeovil’s urban extension can be summarised as below:

  • There is generally limited difference between the options in terms of traffic impact
  • The successful implementation of sustainable travel at any location would mean less impact on the road network.
  • Whilst the North West option has a similar traffic impact as the South and West option in general, ‘eco town’ standards (50% of travel by non-car means) cannot realistically be achieved and there is a likelihood of an increase in car-based travel if the NW option is pursued due to its relative remoteness (around 6km from the town centre).
  • Location options in the south of Yeovil are the only areas that are considered to have the potential to provide realistic opportunities for non-car based travel, due to being relatively close to the town centre (approx 2km), and the relatively flat terrain within the site will help to encourage walking/cycling (although it is recognised that Hendford Hill is a discouragement for such links to the town centre).
  • In terms of provisional cost estimates of strategic highways infrastructure, the south and west location is cheapest at £2m whilst the NW option incorporating a link onto the A3088 is most costly at £9.4m.
  • There will be a noticeable adverse local traffic impact on Hendford Hill and Watercombe Lane from an urban extension to the south and west. There will be a similar adverse impact on Western Avenue should a North West option for growth be decided upon. Mitigation of such local impact is more realisable in relation to the development to the south and west of Yeovil rather than to the north and west.

5.37 The traffic conclusions above support the south and west location. Furthermore the Highways Agency have indicated that the Parsons Brinkerhoff modelling work is sound and clarified their view

'In summing up, our view is that options to the south and east of Yeovil are located in more sustainable locations and therefore on Highways grounds these should be promoted ahead of other urban extension locations.'.... 'Our rationale was that the northern options are physically closer to the strategic road network and so traffic would be more likely to use the network for outbound commuting to neighbouring towns. We also concluded that, southern options for an urban extension were likely to offer better current and future opportunities to use sustainable travel modes, which in turn would lead to less vehicular trips on the network.'